“The news that is being spread that I am quitting my party is a figment of imagination. These people just want to spread canards. …,” said former Goa Chief Minister and veteran Congress leader Pratapsingh Rane
PANAJI — Former Goa Chief Minister and veteran Congress leader Pratapsingh Rane on Wednesday categorically denied any plans of quitting the Congress and accused the BJP of spreading canards against him.
Rane was responding to the contents of a speech made by former Maharashtra Chief Minister and BJP’s Goa desk in-charge Devendra Fadnavis, who in a speech on Tuesday had hinted that Rane was likely to quit the Congress and join the BJP in the coming days. Fadnavis made the comment during the formal induction ceremony of former chief minister and now former Congress MLA Ravi Naik into the BJP.
“The news that is being spread that I am quitting my party is a figment of imagination. These people just want to spread canards. I am not leaving my party,” Rane said in a video statement issued on Wednesday.
“I belong to the Congress party for over 45 years. and I do not think that I would ever at this juncture of leaving the Congress party. I belong to the Indian National Congress and that’s it,” the former Chief Minister also said.
Rane’s son, Vishwajit, is currently the Health Minister in the BJP-led coalition government. He resigned as Congress MLA in 2017 to join the BJP. Pratapsingh Rane is the oldest serving legislator in the state assembly, with a 50-year undefeated stint as an MLA from the Poriem assembly constituency in North Goa.
Since the 2017 state Assembly polls, 14 out of the 17 elected Congress MLAs have joined the Bharatiya Janata Party. — IANS